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Top 10 Cuba Tour Highlights

Top 10 Cuba Tour Highlights

Cuba is one of the most talked about destinations this year, and it’s only the beginning of an exciting chapter in the Caribbean island’s history.

Cuba has been one of ElderTreks’s top tours and it continues to sell out. Why? Well, there are so many incredible experiences on the tour, and so many travelers are curious and eager to experience the fun, welcoming and unique culture that is Cuba.

For those who are interested in checking out this fascinating country, we’ve compiled our top 10 highlights in Cuba! We hope they inspire you to come visit this Caribbean gem.

Mojitos

No trip to Cuba is complete without tasting some of the well-known rums. One of the most popular drinks is a refreshing favorite – the Mojito. It combines sugar, lime, mint and soda water with of course, rum. A Cuba Libre (Rum, Coke and lime) is also a thirst-quenching beverage of choice for travelers looking to beat the heat – because it does get hot!

 

Viñales Valley

Viñales Valley is that quintessential Cuban view of the Western part of the island that most travelers have seen a picture of. It’s visually stunning, with hills rolling over the tobacco fields, and palm trees with the perfect light of a stunning sunrise or sunset. It’s also a UNESCO World Heritage Site, because of the traditional forms of agriculture still found in the Valley, specifically a lot of tobacco.

Tobacco

Speaking of tobacco, it had to be on the highlight list - Cuba is celebrated for its tobacco, and hands down, it is some of the world’s best. On the ElderTreks itinerary you visit a tobacco farm; where you interact with the farmer and learn more about the traditions, and then a cigar factory, where workers work tirelessly to perfectly hand-roll your favorite cigars. It’s a true art form.

Classic Cars in Havana

One of the appeals of Cuba is its a destination seemingly “trapped in time”.  Since Cubans couldn’t get their hands on new cars, or car parts for that matter they had to be creative to maintain their vehicles all of these years - lots of ingenuity and plastic seat covers were used! One of the most commonly cited highlights for ElderTreks travelers is their evening Classic Car tour, where they explored the historic city of Havana with the wind blowing through their hair in the backseat of a classic convertible.  

 

Escambray Mountains

The Escambray Mountains are in the South-Central part of the Island, and are home to Topes de Collantes, a nature reserve park. It’s full of waterfalls, trees, rivers – it’s truly beautiful. Here is some of the best nature walks, culminating in a stop at a local coffee house with locally grown beans. Not only picturesque and relaxing, its also much cooler, and a welcome break from the heat.

Santa Clara

Santa Clara is a unique stop on the ElderTreks itinerary because it feels the most local of all the towns visited, and you can sense that as soon as you set foot in it. Local people are a little bit poorer, and more aggressive with approaching travelers, and all of the prices in the streets and shops were in the local currency (not the CUC like everywhere else). It has a lot of history, specifically with the Revolution, and although some itineraries pass through it for a couple of hours, ElderTreks offers a chance to really explore it by foot, and by tuk-tuk. It’s definitely a highlight for off-the-beaten path travelers.

Buena Vista Social Club

So many people have heard of the Buena Vista Social Club, so to hear the infamous music and lively group performing in person is a true highlight. The energy, passion and dynamic nature of the performers is easy to be seen as soon as you hear the first note. The band effortlessly expresses the allure and enthusiasm of the original Havana club. 

Colorful Trinidad

Trinidad, a UNESCO World Heritage Site is a colorful and unique Cuban city with a ton of charm. Think cobbled streets, picturesque doors and windows, and colorful walls, with history abounding. It’s a fun city to walk (although the cobblestones are some of the most difficult on the trip and even in comparison to Europe) Considering the colonial city was founded in the 1500’s, it gets a pass!

Revolution Square Havana

 

Visiting Social Centers

One of the most unique characteristics about Cuba is the government. After all – it is what led to the embargo. It’s interesting to see how the government “takes care” of its people – from the senior centers, maternity homes and group schools, it’s a unique experience. On the tour, you visit all three of these places and get a chance to interact with the local people who will explain all about their daily life and what occurs.  It’s a highlight to understand more of what life is like for Cubans.

The kindness of the people 

Interacting with locals is a must on any ElderTreks trip, and Cuba is no exception. The local people are generous, welcoming and kind. They don’t have much, but they will share it with you and will share the stories of their lives. They love to ask questions and are happy that you are visiting and sharing in the beauty of their country. Don’t forget to bring donations with you. Some good items to have are pens, bars of soap or shampoo, and always leave some hair elastics, nail polish or other goodies for your room attendants.  The people, like most countries are the true highlight.


Have you been to Cuba? Do you agree with the list? If you are looking to explore Cuba, what do you want to see? Don’t forget to check out ElderTreks' 13-day itinerary to Cuba.

Amanda Dunning - September 09, 2016
 

"more interested in 'off the beaten tract' to avoid throngs of adventures, such as indigenous native communities in Ecuador rather than the Galapagos ...exploring (hiking)in western Burma ... avoiding the congestion of the cities. "

orme lewis jr

"Am I able to do this Trip through my travel agent ? "

Phyllis Mowatt

"Hi Phyllis, yes you are able to do this trip through your travel agent!"

Amanda @ ElderTreks
 

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